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In the new issue of the Security Index: Lassina Zerbo, the Executive Secretary of the CTBTO on DPRK nuclear testing and the future of the CTBTO, PIR Center’s recommendations for strengthening the international nuclear non-proliferation regime with comments by Sergio Duarte, High Representative of the UN Secretary General for Disarmament Affairs (2007-2012), Vadim Kozyulin on autonomous combat systems, Andrey Shkarbanov and Konstantin Stalmakhov on civil liability for nuclear damage, Kamal Gasimov on conflicts and squabbles within Syrian opposition, round table discussion on high-tech crime co-sponsored by CCI and PIR Center, Olga Mikhailova on cyber security of NPPs and critical infrastructure, Alyona Makhukova on Humanitarian initiative and the NPT review process.


"Fears of those who believe that the end of the Syrian conflict will lead to a civil war between the opposition groups are far from being groundless", — Kamal Gasimov, expert at the Center for Strategic Studies under the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan.




“The picture is by far more complex and difficult than many believe in Syria, and Resolution 1540 has a very direct relevance to this situation as it speaks not only about the governmental responsibility, but the other side’s responsibility as well. We do think that the risk of provocations is there and the crucial moment will come when the stockpile of chemicals will be removed from the Syrian territory. What will happen when these trucks with containers will go from places where this stuff is stored to the port for further transportation?” ­– Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov.



“Provocation on the part of the opposition in Damascus suburb, designed to trigger Western intervention in Syria and expanding inflow of foreign jihadists from Yemen and the Afghan Taliban led to a decrease in security of the region. The neutrality of Israel in the Syrian civil war and the initiative of Vladimir Putin on putting Syrian chemical weapons under international control were among the few positive developments of the period. However, we should not expect that something significant happens”, - President of the Institute of Middle East Studies Evgeny Satanovsky.


“The UN peacekeepers are only tools and the decision on how to use these tools is being made by important officials in New York. They are trying to make this decision by compromise or by condition of a complete blocking by one State of any compromise. The latter means a complete standstill, that is why all the questions must be addressed to the guys from the East River”, – Alexander Shumilin, the Head of the Center for Analysis of Middle East conflicts.


«It is unclear if Syria will be able to provide on its own the level of security necessary to persuade everyone: us, the Americans, the French, the people from the region, even the Israelis – that chemical weapons will not disappear, will not fall in hands of terrorists or someone else, will not be hidden. In order to provide this kind of security we will probably need international efforts without precedents», – PIR Center President Vladimir Orlov.


“We need to abandon the last frontiers doctrine. The doctrine says that Russia should be narrowly focused on the states of CIS and especially Ukraine and Belarus which are located along its geographic and strategic borders. But when you stop protecting your interests far from your borders – you start giving in at your own gates”, – Alexei Pushkov, Chairman of Russian State Duma’s International Affairs Committee.


“We need to understand all the difficulties of the process of elimination of Syrian chemical weapons. And if due to the urgency of task we imply the physical transportation, the operation becomes unprecedented. The most ambitious project up to date, on the experience of which we can rely, was the withdrawal of Soviet nuclear weapons from Belarus, Kazakhstan and Ukraine to Russia. Back then, in the beginning of 1990-s in the framework of Lisbon agreement, the operation ended successfully”, – PIR Center Senior Vice President, Lieutenant-General (ret.) Evgeny Buzhinsky.


“G-20summit in Mexico have witnessed the first meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and U.S. President Barack Obama. The meeting passed in positive atmosphere and the major points of the Russian and American politics were discussed. But the presidents clearly avoided to rise any questions that could bring in serious disagreements. As there are virtually no chances to resolve disagreements over missile defense in Europe before the US presidential elections, the problem will be postponed to a subsequent post-election period”, - Director General of the Russian Council on Foreign Affairs, Andrey Kortunov.